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Alternative Therapies For Asthma

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Alternative Therapies For Asthma

Many people with asthma turn to complementary medicine (CAM) therapies as a means of relieving symptoms or avoiding attacks. Common treatments include dietary supplements, herbal products, spinal manipulation, acupuncture and meditation.

Complementary medicines can be used in addition to or as an alternative for conventional asthma therapy, but should always be done under the supervision of a qualified healthcare provider.

Acupuncture is one of the most widely-used complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments for asthma. Research has indicated that it can reduce symptoms and enhance quality of life through reduced immune system activity and improved bronchial muscle tone. While acupuncture usually poses no danger, some patients may experience serious side effects after receiving treatment.

Yoga is another CAM therapy that may be beneficial for those living with asthma. It helps strengthen lungs and enhance respiratory function through teaching breathing techniques like the Buteyko technique, while potentially relieving stress and anxiety as well.

Relaxation therapies like hypnosis, massage and meditation have long been promoted to help alleviate asthma symptoms and reduce the risk of attacks. While these can be effective treatments for asthmatics, they must be used consistently with close monitoring to be most beneficial.

Herbal supplements may provide temporary relief of some asthma symptoms, however they aren’t regulated by the FDA and could potentially have dangerous side effects. Furthermore, herbal supplements may interfere with medications prescribed for your condition that you take.

Dietary supplements can help prevent or reduce symptoms of asthma by stimulating the immune system. Unfortunately, they aren’t as powerful as prescription drugs, so it is best to combine them with your regular asthma medication for maximum benefit.

Exercise can help alleviate asthma symptoms, but it must be done consistently. Exercise also reduces the amount of inhaled reliever medication you need to take. But this requires time and dedication – which is why working with your doctor to get the most out of these exercises is so important.

Other complementary and alternative medicines (CAM therapies) which have been associated with reducing asthma symptoms include breath training, qi gong and tai chi. These exercises may aid in increasing lung function, strengthening muscles around the lungs and relieving stress.

Biofeedback, a non-traditional psychological therapy, is sometimes employed to train individuals how to control their asthma symptoms. While this approach can be helpful for those suffering from mild to moderate cases of the disorder, it may not be as successful in more severe cases.

Homeopathic medicines may be used to treat certain asthma symptoms, however they are not FDA-regulated and haven’t been proven effective. Furthermore, these drugs could potentially have serious side effects or interact with other medicines you take for your condition. It is important to use caution when using any homeopathic medication for asthma treatment.

Other types of CAM can be detrimental, such as iridology and reflexology, which could lead to severe illness. Therefore, the Expert Panel does not endorse their use for treating asthma or allergies.

Research into some complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs) such as chiropractic or related techniques like tai chi or qi gong has not always yielded conclusive evidence of any benefits.

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